Custom «Explanatory Response Pages» Essay Paper Sample

Explanatory Response Pages

Their Dogs Came with Them isa novel that was written by Helena Maria Viramontes in year 2007. It is her most recent work. The author is a Mexican but was born in East Los Angeles in California, United States. Her novel is acclaimed to contain complex characters and the style she used gritty writing style to compile her book. The book is simply based on Helena Maria’s life in California. The extract, Page 81 to 84 is a representation of the whole book which talks about the Vietnam War, the freeway construction and the kind of hard life that Mexican Americans had to deal with in California. The extract touches on a gang member funnel that the ubiquitous women encountered with. A closer review of the whole book shows that the gang comprised of Chicano youths which affected Chicano communities in many ways. The book focuses on the fate of Mexican immigrants in East Los Angeles in the era of 1960s. The extract as well as the book shows that the plight of Mexican Americans only intensified in the urban streets. The immigrant’s homes were destroyed due to the freeway construction as the urban landscape was gradually rising. The orders came from the Quarantine authority that was made up of police and road blocks whose excuse was that they were trying to protect East Los Angeles residents from rabid animals. Currently, only one side of the first street remains. The homes filled with neighbors were immediately condemned and turned empty shells in anticipation of the coming of Pomona Freeway that was meant to connect the sea and the inland valleys.

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The extract shows the poverty, the gangs, the hardships, the violence and the deplorable conditions that the ubiquitous woman had to deal with in her everyday life. The community is experiencing radical changes with Chicano, a civil right activists stepping up to fight for the Mexicans. The woman in the extract is struggling to make ends meet and she possesses different aspects of human identity. The ubiquitous woman in the extract revolves around Ermila and she is one of the four women who make the archetypal four female characters in the book. The other women are; Turtle, Tranquilina and Ana. The four characters resemble elements i.e., Ana, Tranquilina, Ermila and Turtle represent water, earth, wind and fire respectively. Ermila is an abused orphan living away from her grandparents. She was initially transferred back to her grandparents’ home in First Street by the social services from a foster home. She later relocates to the streets to feed herself. It’s in the streets that she makes new friends who uniformly experience the power of the Chicano movement. The Mexican ubiquitous woman in the extract searches for throttled bottlenecks of cokes, bottles of Pabst Blue Ribbon and bites of burritos meat thrown in the oil barrels of Salas Used Cars garage by the mechanics. Her kind of work flaked skin, smelly body, hunger, blistered feet and her few filthy possessions shows that the woman was poor and homeless. The woman went through a tough life and she occasionally stole eggs and the chickens owned by the Red Pagoda restaurant in Chinatown. Her hunger pain makes her risk getting caught and punished and persevere the pain from the pecking beaks. She passing near the gangs’ funnel without fear at night shows that she is well assimilated in to the gangs’ activities. After her encounter with the dog, the extract ends where the woman enters a shabby room full of people who were listening to their preacher, Papa Tomas.

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